Monday, July 31, 2017

Hull Illumination Night

Hey everyone!
This weekend I was fortunate enough to work an event at the Hull Illumination night, which is a really cool event that culminates in a lighting of the Boston Harbor with road flares spaced evenly along the Hull shoreline, which is extremely beautiful. Having many friends in Hull, I've gone to this event as a member of the public many times, but this is the first time that I've ever worked it. I was actually not supposed to even work this event, but due to high winds the event I was meant to work was cancelled, so I was lucky enough to go to Illumination Night. I was very excited to be able to work this event, as it is near and dear to my heart, and though the weather was less than ideal, and we may have had fewer guests than we would have liked, I fully enjoyed the experience.

Our setup for fish printing, featuring a
genuine flounder!
As usual, our team comprised of myself, Briana, Garrett, Eric, and Jaiden, found ourselves doing some fish printing for the great people of Hull. As usual, I found myself silently delighting every time people realized it was, in fact, a real fish that we were using. The reactions always range from disgust, to fascination, to fear, and more. It was funny watching one young girl timidly poking the fish with her bare finger and then jumping back as if it would react in some way. Of course, we made sure to teach everyone about the life cycle of a flounder, and how it begins with eyes on both sides of its head in its larval stage. Once it metamorphoses into its juvenile stage, one eye migrates to the other side, and the flounder goes from being bilaterally symmetrical, to asymmetrical and swimming with one side on the bottom of the ocean floor. If you already knew this, chances are you're a marine biologist or have attended one of our fish printing sessions. If you did not already know this, then congratulations on your new fun fact!

The fish print by my mother, proudly displayed
on our mantle!
As I mentioned previously, our guest count was lower than I would have liked, likely since it was cold and a bit overcast. However, we still had many quality visits, but two in particular stood out to me. The first was a visit from my parents, where my mom was able to do a fish print. It was nice to be able to share the work I've been doing this summer in a way with them that is not simply a story, but the real deal!

The other was a young girl who came by and asked how much it cost to do a fish print. When we told her it was free, and she could do one, she excitedly ran back to her mother, and while I couldn't hear what she was saying, you could tell she was over the moon with the idea. And I am over the moon with the idea that we were able to in some way engage this girls excitement over the meshing of art and science, which of course is the entire point of our work here at Save the Harbor.

Until next time, when there's a slight chance one of my eyes will have migrated!

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